Sunday, June 19, 2016

Christian Fellowship

1 John 1:6-7 “If we claim to have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth. But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, His Son, purifies us from all sin.”

I’ve heard and agree that the lack of mutual sharing of values, emotions, and the deepest purposes of our lives can cause all sorts of problems. The lack of abiding fellowship is the reason for much anxiety, turmoil, and lack of security in our society. Jesus Christ’s “great commission” to go and make disciples of all nations never meant to take the biblical virtues and values of the holy Scriptures and hide them behind the doors of your house, your church or under a bushel basket, but to shine the light of truth into our dark, lost and dying in sin society in order to transform it in reassuring bliss, order, peace, and safety of walking together in the Spirit.

Webster’s 1828 Dictionary defines “fellowship” as: Companionship; society; consort; mutual association of persons on equal and friendly terms; familiar intercourse (association, communication and interaction); Communion; intimate familiarity as brothers and sisters in Christ. Men are made for society and mutual fellowship within the boundary limits of a right relationship with God, not fellowship with sinfulness. The Bible is clear:

Ephesians 5:8-13 “For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth), finding out what is acceptable to the Lord. And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them. For it is shameful even to speak of those things which are done by them in secret. But all things that are exposed are made manifest by the light, for whatever makes manifest is light.”

Have you heard that when the Spirit of God and the love and forgiveness of God fill our hearts, all of the barriers sin has erected are broken down. Then by the grace of God we are reunited and reconciled one to another. We become one in Christ. Sin always divides and separates people from God. Habakkuk 1:13 says: “Your eyes are too pure to look at sin. You cannot look on wrong.” God cannot let sin go unpunished or else He would not be pure, just or holy. Sin also often divides and separates people from each other. Sin misses the mark and hit something else every time. The ultimate goal of the devil is to separate people from God through sin, but in the forgiveness of sin through the redeeming atonement of Christ on the cross for the payment of our sin, we are joined together. Romans 6:23 says: “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” In Him, mankind is united with God and then His people are united with each other in true fellowship.

John 1:9-14 “The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world. He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God — children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God. The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth."

The Apostle is telling us that Christ is creating a family in the deepest, most spiritual, noblest, and holiest sense of the word. The relationship and deep fellowship that Believers have with each other is so intimate that it is described as “one body”. We are parts of the body of Christ. It reflects the perfect unity Heaven holds. Christian fellowship goes far beyond friendship (as the 1828 Webster’s definition indicates). In an alienated and lonely politically correct world of materialistic secular humanism where “self” is the “end all” focus, the worldwide church (the body of Christ) has a great privilege, opportunity and responsibility to show that world what true loving fellowship is all about. Spread the good news. Speak the truth in love.

In Christ, Brian

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